President Obama’s 2014 budget request was breaking news today, and I’m thrilled to report that on one of our top priorities—The Global Fund—he didn’t break our heart. In fact, he filled our hearts with joy, requesting $1.65 billion to help sustain America’s leadership role in supporting The Global Fund’s life-saving work on AIDS, TB, and malaria.
This was not a foregone conclusion or an easy victory—just a few months ago, word on the street was that the Obama Administration’s love for The Global Fund was on the rocks, and that they were considering hundreds of millions of dollars’ worth of cuts to the program.
But ONE members from across the country, in partnership with so many of our friends in the global health community, took action. You sent President Obama thousands of cheeky Valentine’s Day cards, made hundreds of phone calls, wrote letters and helped remind him why he fell in love with The Global Fund in the first place (after all, saving 100,000 lives every month is pretty attractive).
Today’s budget request, then, is proof that the spark between President Obama and the Global Fund has been reignited. This passion isn’t just important for the United States – it also sends a strong signal to other donors who are debating their own Global Fund commitments for the next three years. If the US can sustain $1.65 billion worth of annual love for the Global Fund, and if the rest of the world can step up to match the US’ commitments 2-to-1 (as they have in the past), the Global Fund will be able to generate the $15 billion it needs to help bend the curve of these three deadly diseases.
Of course, the work doesn’t stop here—now, we need members of Congress from both parties to come together to ensure the President’s request becomes a reality in the appropriations process, and we also need to keep fighting for sustained global health financing across the board. But for today, take a minute to bask in the glow of the victory by sharing this article on Facebook or posting this tweet on Twitter. Thanks to all of our ONE members who helped keep the love alive!